Here’s an update on my request that information about my site be removed from Wordhustler dot com. Again, I don’t use .com because I’m not trying to create a link or endorse the site.
After initially refusing to remove my information and referring me to her attorney, Anne Walls, one of the site’s founders, emailed me today and said they were removing my information. She asked me to remove my prior comments about the site from my blog. I explained to her that, like a news article that’s been published, you can’t just delete the blog entries I’ve already posted. So my thanks to Ms. Walls (and apologies for misspelling her name in prior posts) and the folks at Wordhustler for removing my firm’s information from its site.
Isn’t it all better when we just play nice?
But my discussion raised an interesting point: What is the general feeling about editing blogs? I’ve noticed a movement on some sites toward leaving in place but striking out prior entries when circumstances have changed. Perhaps the information was incorrect or is now out-of-date. Or maybe someone just changed his mind. Is that right? I can’t help but wonder if we aren’t on the verge of some Orwellian time when blogs or even news articles can be edited and changed or deleted so easily. The leader of North Korea is apparently fond of ordering changes in the official history of his country. I’ve heard Japanese textbooks apparently ignore Japan’s less savory bits of history, like the Rape of Nanking and taking women from their families in Korea and turning them into “comfort women” for the troops. Iran, of course, would like us to believe the Holocaust never happened.
Now imagine when the search-and-replace function in software is intelligent enough to tear through entire websites and change information. Imagine if Iran put hackers to work to delete any and all information about the Holocaust it could find online. Scary, eh?
Sure, a blog entry that is offensive (like genuinely offensive, not offensive like “I’m the President of Iran and I’m offended you believe in the Holocaust) should be edited or deleted. Or one that is legally actionable. But should an error in reporting be deleted or should it just be struck out and updated? How about when circumstances change, as they did today, when Ms. Walls agreed to take the information off her site? Or is what I’m doing here enough?
Let’s take a poll (no, not an actual “push this button” poll, but just in the comments):
Should I go back and remove my comments about Wordhustler or is this update thanking them for their cooperation enough? And if I were to “remove” them, should I delete them entirely, or just strike them out?